Families of children and youth with special needs, including physical, developmental and/or communications needs, can have difficulties receiving services in a timely and coordinated way. Ontario is working to improve how families access the services they need, as close to home as possible.
Ontario is moving ahead with a Special Needs Strategy. This will help children and youth get timely and effective services they need at home, at school, in the community, and as they transition to adulthood.
The goal is to connect these children and youth to the services they need as early as possible and improve the service experience of families in three key areas:
1. Identifying kids earlier and getting them the right help sooner
Trained providers will have a new developmental screen for children in the preschool years. They will screen for potential risks to the child’s development as early as possible.
2. Coordinating service planning
New service planning coordinators for children and youth with multiple or complex special needs will connect families to the right services and supports.
3. Making supports and service delivery seamless
Integrating the delivery of rehabilitation services, such as speech-language therapy, occupational therapy and physiotherapy. Services will be easier to access and seamless from birth through the school years.
- Ministry of Children and Youth Services
Since Fall 2014, education, healthcare community and rehabilitation providers have been meeting to work together on the special needs strategy in York Region and Simcoe County. Listed below you will find a number of newsletters/communiques that share updates and information. You will also find a number of resource documents that have helped support this work.
In November, the proposals for coordinated service planning in Simcoe County and York Region were reviewed and approved by the ministries, pending clarification on a few pieces of information. We are pleased to share that CTN will be the lead agency for coordinated service planning in York Region and Simcoe Country. Work to reconvene the planning tables is underway.